Alcohol (And Drugs) And Wrong-Way Car Crashes: Is There a Link?

January 13, 2018
On behalf of The Law Offices of Howard Craig Kornberg Posted in Car Accident

You’ve probably seen wrong-way drivers in Los Angeles multiple times, and thought to yourself, “That driver is putting his safety and the safety of others at risk!” Well, you had a point.

While wrong-way driving is one of the most common causes of car accidents in Los Angeles – sitting somewhere between speeding and distracted driving – why do so many people violate traffic rules and drive against the direction of traffic?

Our car accident lawyer Howard Craig Kornberg explains that while missing signage and distracted drivings are the main culprits, alcohol and drug-impaired driving is also a wide-spread cause of wrong-way driving.

The only difference between missing signage or distracted driving and wrong-way driving, however, is that sooner or later, the driver that misses a sign and subsequently heads in the wrong direction will notice that something is wrong, and will cautiously turn the vehicle around.

This isn’t the case with drunk driving, as overly intoxicated motorists typically don’t stop driving in the wrong direction until it’s too late and the car has crashed into one of the oncoming vehicles.

And given that the car was headed in the direction of traffic, the car accident will most likely be a head-on collision, the deadliest type of car crashes in the U.S.

Fact: head-on collisions are rare, yet they account for nearly 4,000 fatal crashes every year (over 10% of all traffic fatalities in the country).

Fatal wrong-way crash kills 6 people

A wrong-way crash has recently killed six people on a Northern California highway. The fatal collision, which involved two vehicles, took place last week.

A Chevrolet driven by a woman was heading south in the northbound lanes of the highway when it slammed into a Dodge that had five occupants in the vehicle.

As a result of the head-on collision, both vehicles burst into flames. All six people in the two cars have been killed at the scene of the car accident. Investigators are currently investigating whether or not alcohol or drugs caused wrong-way driving.

Consequences of wrong-way driving

While our best car accident attorneys in Los Angeles have established that drunk driving and marijuana-impaired driving can be major factors in wrong-way crashes, be warned of the devastating consequences and injuries that can result from a wrong-way crash:

  • Brain injuries;
  • Broken bones and fractures;
  • Concussion;
  • Back and neck injuries;
  • Internal organ injuries and bleeding;
  • Lacerations;
  • Contusions; and many others.

Not all Los Angeles residents get to survive a wrong-way collision, as this type of car accident is considered the deadliest in our country, especially when two cars are traveling at moderate to high speeds.

If you’ve been the victim of a head-on collision as a result of wrong-way driving, do know that treating your injuries will most likely require hundreds of thousands of dollars (or more) in medical bills, treatment, recovery and rehabilitation expenses, and other damages.

Not to mention that a wrong-way crash can leave you temporarily or permanently disabled. Meaning: you will have to recover lost wages and lost capacity in order to make both ends meet.

Take legal action against a wrong-way driver

While drunk driving and the use of marijuana is one of the main factors in wrong-way crashes – given that both alcohol and drugs slow down reaction time and impair focus – our Los Angeles car accident attorneys at Law Offices of Howard Craig Kornberg also name other causes of wrong-way driving:

  • Missing signage (as a result of distracted driving or improperly placed signage);
  • Heavy vegetation or poor lighting obscuring traffic signage;
  • Driving on unfamiliar highways and roadways;
  • Road construction, which fails to alert motorists which lanes to take to bypass the construction works safely and prevent head-on collisions;
  • Improperly marked roads.

Whatever is the factor in a wrong-way crash, it requires a thorough investigation by a skilled lawyer. Here at Law Offices of Howard Craig Kornberg, our attorneys will help you determine liability in your case, evaluate your injuries and damages, and – if necessary – fight day and night in and outside courts to obtain compensation on your behalf.

Consult our motor vehicle accident attorneys today by calling at 310-997-0904 or complete this contact form. We offer a free initial consultation.


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